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Revenue up, income down for Sparks Health owner

Health Management Associates saw its full year revenue rise by more than 15%, but net income for the year came in at $164.27 million, down 8% compared to the previous period.

Naples, Fla.-based HMA is the parent company of Sparks Health System in Fort Smith and operates Summit Medical Center in Van Buren. When the deal is finalized to bring Bayfront Health System (St. Petersburg, Fla.) into the system, HMA will operate 71 hospitals with approximately 11,000 licensed beds in “non-urban communities” in the U.S.

Net revenue – total revenue reduced by the provision for doubtful accounts – for the fiscal year was $5.87 billion, above the $5.08 billion in the previous fiscal year. The full year per share earnings of 64 cents fell below the 81 cents that was the consensus estimate of analysts.

For the fourth quarter of the fiscal year, the hospital holding company posted $1.48 billion in net revenue, up over the $1.388 billion in the 2011 fourth quarter. Fourth quarter net income was $48.28 million, well ahead of the $30.847 million in the 2011 period.

Fourth quarter per share earnings of 19 cents beat the consensus estimate of 18 cents per share.

"Our 2012 results reflect both a challenging and successful fourth quarter and year. I am very proud of and thankful for the efforts of our physicians, nurses and health care professionals, whose hard work and dedication to delivering the best possible care are the reasons for our success," Gary Newsome, HMA president and CEO, said in a statement. "While we are pleased with the overall results, we also recognize that there are always areas and processes that can be improved. As such, we will continue to focus on our patient-centered approach, cost management and partnership opportunities, while taking important strategic steps we believe will better position Health Management for continued success going forward."

Key points of the earnings statement released Thursday (Feb. 14) afternoon include:
• Same hospital net revenue increased 5.1% to $1.459 billion;
• Same hospital net revenue per adjusted admission increased 5.2%;
• Same hospital surgeries and emergency room visits increased 0.9% and 9.2%, respectively;
• The company’s fourth quarter provision for doubtful accounts was $234.6 million, or 13.7% of net revenue before the provision for doubtful accounts, compared to $195.1 million, or 12.3% of net revenue before the provision of doubtful accounts, for the same quarter a year ago.
• The “Uncompensated Patient Care Percentage” was 28.7% for the fourth quarter, compared to 25.4% for the 2011 fourth quarter a year ago, and 29% for the 2012 third quarter.

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Also, the company’s cash position fell during 2012. Cash and cash equivalents for HMA totaled $59.173 million as of Dec. 31, 2012, down from $64.143 million at the end of 2011.

Shares of HMA closed Thursday at $10.70, down 2 cents. The earnings report was released after the markets closed. During the past 52 weeks, the share price has ranged from a $10.79 high to a $5.92 low.

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